As expected after calling out the Top 25, there is another couple of rounds of wardrobe changes. First, the Top 25 paraded in black-colored casual and cocktail wear designed by Lidia Kalita, set to a medley of “Don’t Be So Hard on Yourself” by Jess Glynne and “Forgive Me Friend” by Smith & Thell and Swedish Jam Factory. The segue between a house-inflected number and a Mumford & Sons-meets-Avicii may sound a bit of a rough segued but individually, they are enjoyable to lsiten
Another fashion parade followed, featuring gowns designed by Ela Piorun set to “Wish You Well” by Sigala & Becky HIll and Sia‘s mega-smash “Cheap Thrills” (the remix version with Sean Paul). After this sequence they would announce the Top 10.
Before I discuss the Top 10, time to talk about the ladies who made the Top 25.
25TH PLACE: NEW ZEALAND – Eva Louise Wilson. Lookswise I was never that into her and she could be the headscratcher of the group. But it turns out she secured her slot via one of the four wildcard slots based on their strong interview performance in the 2nd round of Supra-Chats. If it weren’t for that wildcard, she may not have ranked in the Top 30. At least we can salute and pay respect that her gift of gab and intelligence helped her overtake several others. I’m slightly upset that this led to AUSTRALIA being shut out.
24TH PLACE: SINGAPORE – Naomi Huth. The bottom three of the Top 25 are the Supra-Chat champions, but many fans (including myself) felt she would’ve at least figured in the Top 30 anyway as she’s surprisingly polished. I’m stoked that this country not renowned for figuring in pageantry has its moment in the spotlight.
23RD PLACE: IRELAND – Jessica VanGaalen. She’s the third who secured her slot thanks to the Supra-Chats, and I definitely have no objections to her inclusion. It’s just too bad she is clearly outperformed in terms of stage chops that definitely she could not be in contention for the Top 10.
22ND PLACE: MEXICO – Dariana Uriste. She has a face that I classify as “sugar pretty”, something that some people might appreciate but others might find a tad too “sweet”. Though she made a splash as the winner of Best National Costume, I know she doesn’t have what it takes to advance further to the next round.
21ST PLACE: TRINIDAD & TOBAGO – Yia-Loren Gomez. Though I betted on JAMAICA, I’m not that surprised this lady was picked over her instead. She was one of the Supra-Chat semifinalsits, and she also made a major splash in her colorful national costume besides her overall polished presence that I don’t mind seeing her in this group.
20TH PLACE: POLAND – Kamila Świerc. Everyone knows there is always a spot reserved for this host country in this pageant, and no one will complain at her inclusion. But admittedly she doesn’t deliver as much impact as her predecessors, so this “lowly” placement is expected.
19TH PLACE: GUATEMALA – Andrea Radford. I only placed her in my Bubbling Under list, but she is a worthy inclusion in this group.
18TH PLACE: ARGENTINA – Avril Marco. I don’t know I only placed her in my Striking Distance list as in hindsight she’s strong enough to belong in my Bubbling Under list. Anyway, her presence is welcome here.
17TH PLACE: PUERTO RICO – Shaleyka Velez. She’s a solid follow-up to the outgoing Miss Supranational and her placement in such a competitive batch is worth celebrating.
16TH PLACE: INDIA – Shefali Sood. In another year, she would’ve probably made a play for the Top 10 but it’s obvious she’s drowned out by a highly competitive group like this year’s batch.
15TH PLACE: DOMINICAN REPUBLIC – Yaliza Burgos. She was one that I was slightly heartbroken to place only in my Bubbling Under list as I thought she is very polished, has a dusky exotic charisma, and she has superb communication skills (she speaks English with a neutral North American accent). Glad the judges took a liking to her and granted her this spot, and this finish should not be dismissed as we do have such an extremely strong batch this year.
14TH PLACE: PHILIPPINES – Resham Saeed. I know many Filipino pageant fans and pundits would want her to advance further and equal the finish of her two predecessors, and indeed in another year she may indeed achieve that, but well, we do have such a formidable batch that the judges simply could not find room for her. Interestingly she was the fourth Supra-Chat winner to secure her slot in the Top 25, but based on this ranking, it seems she would’ve made the cut without the Surpa-Chat win anyway. Yes, it only equaled the rank earned by Rogelie Catacutan and Joanna Eden in 2015 and 2016 respectively, but still this rank is nothing to scoff at.
13TH PLACE: CAMEROON – Angele Kossinda Bourmassou. I would’ve probably ranked her lower than INDIA< DOMINICAN REPUBLIC, and PHILIPPINES, but still we have to salute she has that African exotic charisma that I won’t begrudge the judges’ high regard for her.
12TH PLACE: NETHERLANDS – Nathalie Mogbelzada. I was expecting her to make a play fot the Final Five because of her Miss Elegance award but apparently the judges felt as much as she’s a shoo-in, she’s not as much of a front-runner as many would’ve perceived. She’s slightly in the same boat as…
11TH PLACE: ICELAND – Birta Egilsdóttir. I was expecting her to advance to the Top 10, but it seems she fell a bit short to favor a couple of ladies that the judges seem to favor more.
COMING UP: THE TOP 10